The minimum wage increase, pushed first by Assembly Democrats and made a priority by a breakaway group of independent Senate Democrats, will not be indexed for inflation. The deal, according to a legislative source, also does not include an increase for people making tip wages, such as waiters.
Officials said 50 percent of minimum wage earners in New York are under the age of 20. Senate co-leader Dean Skelos, a Long Island Republican, told The Buffalo News Sunday that protections for businesses that hire workers under age 20 was a priority for Senate Republicans; he predicted companies and not-for-profits would not be able to afford to hire as many young people if the wage hike was permitted without some sort of financial cover for those entities. The new provision discussed today by budget negotiators could also prod some companies to hire younger workers.